Monday, October 22, 2012

Time for a Tablet?

This rat’s nest of wires and gadgets is my on-road kit, recharging:  Three phones, a computer, a camera, an mp3 player, a clock/alarm, sometimes a TomTom or voice recorder, all with universal adapters.   They nestle into a shoulder bag, which also has my diary, my expense book, my notes-book, a Dutch dictionary, Dutch workbook, magazines, a book or two,  hair brush and reading glasses.

Except for the brush and glasses, is it time to consolidate?

The anachronistic folly was emphasized during a recent planning meeting: when it was time for a date check, everyone pulled out phones and tablets.  I whipped out the trusty Cambridge Diary and a pen.  For goodness sake: you’re the tech guy!, hooted my companions.  “ ’not an issue”, I grimaced.  But when I got back to Cambridge I went looking for the 2013 edition and it became one: my 800-year-old institution had finally given up on printing paper diaries.

It’s clearly time to move on, get with the 21st century.


Although I’m not completely trusting of cloud storage and worry about the risk of losing everything if catastrophe befalls a tables, the emerging 7” form factor is appealing, and cheap enough to experiment with.  Most of the printed material has on-line equivalents that can be red off-line, and it shouldn’t be much trick to consolidate audio media.  I’ll likely hold the camera (and reading glasses) separate for now (people do look ridiculous taking photos with a tablet), but otherwise everything should go into one electronic device (and power cord).

7inchers_scFortunately, this is Tech-tablet-announcement week: Apple early, Microsoft mid, and Google late, all with new products.   The Surface is likely too large for what I want, Apple’s Mini will probably be too expensive.  That leaves Nexus: so if Google comes up with 3G connectivity, I’m ready to take the leap and she the shoulder-bag.

‘Advice to a tech-savvy, tablet-naïve road warrior is welcome!

Follow-on: Nov 1 – There’s now good information coming out from reviewers on all of the options now that product launches are complete.

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